I disagree with him too. Sure, ATS was the bigger departure... but only in comparison to the first two albums. Looking at it chronologically, ATS was just as much of a departure as MTM had been in the context of the band's career. Except ATS didn't come as as much of a surprise as MTM did, it was a natural step further. Okay... although I'd argue that some of the singles ("Leave Out All the Rest", "Shadow of the Day") had pretty strong lyrics.